It's human nature to worry, but did you know
that a research project at Penn State University found that 91% of what people
worry about never actually happens? In other words, most of your fears
never come true.
However, that still leaves 9% of worries that
do come true but, fortunately, the same research revealed that on these
occasions 70% of people found they handled the situation better than they had
expected and/or they learned something valuable from what happened. In
other words, their fear had been worse than the actual situation.
Always remember that, like you, everyone
worries and experiences fear - but most of those fears never materialise! When they do they will rarely be as bad as you imagined, you’ll handle them
better than you expected and you’ll often learn something useful along the way.
There's no single ‘magic bullet’ that will
overcome your worries and fears and stop them from ruining your life but here
are three strategies that may help.
Embrace your fear. The Swiss psychologist Carl Jung
believed that "What
you resist not only persists but will grow in size". The
more you shy away from your worries and fears the more they will grow and come
to dominate your life. But once you acknowledge and accept them for what
they really are they will shrink and lose their hold on you.
Reframe your fear. Many people are habitual
'catastrophisers', always assuming the worst will happen. If you find
yourself thinking like this remember that 91% of fears never come true, start
thinking about the BEST possible outcome, and then focus your imagination on
exploring that scenario.
Develop your courage. Just like any skill, courage starts
small and becomes bigger and stronger the more you use it. Practice removing
worry from your life one fear at a time and, each time you do, your courage
When it comes down to it we don't have much
control over the good and bad things that happen to us. But two things we
can control are our mind-set and our response to circumstances. Facing up
to your fears is a sure way of overcoming them so why not start right
now? Acknowledge a fear that's worrying you, embrace it, reframe it and
overcome it with your new-found courage. Gradually remove your fears one
by one and you'll be free to enjoy life again.